San Francisco makes Vietnamese an official language


The San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted unanimously on Tuesday to recognize Vietnamese as an official city language. It now joins Chinese, Spanish, and Filipino in a move aimed at enhancing language access for the city’s diverse immigrant communities.

  • The decision follows an amendment to San Francisco’s language access ordinance, which now lowers the threshold for language translation services from 10,000 to 6,000 speakers with limited English proficiency. A total of 6,791 residents primarily speak Vietnamese in the city.

  • This means all city government announcements — including telephonic interpretations, website content, written notifications, and other official services — will be translated into Vietnamese. Community advocates highlighted persistent gaps in language access, with issues noted even in essential services such as healthcare.

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